© Farouk Asvat
Now that love is dead,And you, bemused,
Go your whimsical way
That kindness is a curseThat one cannot live on dreams
The periphery of other lives
The thin moment between life and death
The gesture between love and the ocean
That we have to lead our own livesFor beneath the facade of defiance
Lurks the heart of vulnerability
Even as you offer your lips
And I gaze child-eyed at the laughing parade
It is not easy, my loveThe hungry fingers yearn
And the songs of our lives
Keep repeating themselves
So if it was loveHow come the wind still sings sad songs
How come the stars still explode silently
How come the sun barely leaves a shadow
And my eyes are always moist.
Forged by the obscene embrace of cold menIn the grey streets of another city
The massacre in my eyes
Is filled with mournful sighs
With the deep anxiety of oppression
With the full-hearted laughter of infinite despair
With the profound sadness of the universe.
Yet, sweetly so much you gave so trustingly.Was it my chestnut horse's eyes
That gazed into your gushing blood
With that no-man-fuck! look?
Was it the strength of my loneliness
Or the weakness of my gentleness
That made you undress
As eagerly as I sought your searing passion
With my turgid branch?
Or was it just another memory
In a misty haze of faces
Between saturn rockets
And the void of space?
Or was it the first
Of a thousand and one nights?
There was a time I believed the windBelieved orchids bloomed in scraggy gardens
Believed I could give you revolutions
Of the infinite galaxies
Believed we could dance on stardust
Sail on solar breezes
Fly on angelwing
But you released me like a burning asteroidPlummeting into myself
Leaving me only seasand and seashells
I did not feelThe sandsting in the seawind
I did not taste
Snoek and sewer in the air
I only saw the sea
Through armourplate glass
It was then that I realisedThat it was in life
That you were unattainable:
The undulating beauty of the beachThe knowledge of the stars
A world of dreams
To suburban gardens;
It was then I knew
That nights invite the morning
Desire another delight
For a bouquet of diamonds
In a cup full of sorrow.
But stillAfter all these tears
After all these curses
I cast upon you
I look you in the eye
And lay your restless ghost to rest.
But stillOur lives are bound
By tenuous emotions
By spittle threads
Of tender desires
So when you hear me singingLove songs in the wind
Know that I am merely weeping
© farouk asvat
composed: 1980 - 1990 [Cape Town, South Africa under apartheid] [w]
The Wind Still Sings Sad Songs was previously published in:
The Wind Still Sings Sad Songs (piquant publications, p12, 2006).
new updated version: 2007
[We Have To Lead Our Own Lives: section previously published in:English Academy Review # 3 (University of the Witwatersrand, p6, 1985)].
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